Marseille, Aix-de-Provence, & Cassis
This being the last day of our journey (insert sad face here 😦 ), we wanted to make the most of this day in Provence and see as much as we possibly could in the short time we had left. Additionally, this was our first time visiting this port, so once again we had no set plan for the day – we just let fate take over. Thankfully, the glorious Mediterranean weather was perfect for the 16th day in a row, so fate was already proving to be on our side.
The city of Marseille was much larger than we expected, and is surrounded by one of the most impressive marinas we have ever seen – thousands of boats and yachts line the seaside and you can stroll for hours and hours and never seem to reach the end.
The town was just starting to get active when we arrived in the center, and we stumbled upon a bustling market that was full of every kind of hand-crafted-everything you could imagine! We were greeted by a lovely baker who enticed us over to try his free biscotti samples…oh dear…they were unbelievable. So unbelievable in fact, that we filled a bag of almond and pistachio to enjoy with our now morning ritual of cafe-au-lait avec people-watch. Good salesman, that guy.
Now, I mentioned earlier that this market had a plethora of hand-made goods, but one thing I haven’t told you about yet is my mother’s uncontrollable and somewhat disturbing obsession with shopping for said products. Seriously, if there was a support group we could recommend for her, we would do so. Some sort of “Hand-Crafters-Anonymous”, maybe. She absolutely can not pass a craft shop or kiosk without stopping and buying some little knick-knack for the kitchen, or for a Christmas-stocking-near-you. Impossible. So…needless to say…she had found her happy place in this market, and we decided that this is probably where we should part ways for the day, as she would be strolling around here for a while for sure. Sorry, Dad.
Knowing we had limited time to see as much as possible, and knowing that we wanted to make the most of the day due to it being our last, we decided a taxi was the way to go. We had done a little bit of research and learned that there were a few places of interest nearby, so we jumped in a cab to see if we could fit one into the day. We chose “Aix-de-Provence”, as the cab driver said it was only about a 20 min drive, and we had read it had a “bohemian” feel , as it had a few universities and was a “student town”, so that seemed interesting to us.
Let us tell you – the descriptions were bang-on. This was one of the “coolest” towns we had been to in the South of France. Kind of a cross between Nice, Barcelona, mixed with a bit of Montmartre and Marais in Paris. Very cool, funky feel. For example, this is the first thing we stumbled upon as we stepped out of the cab. Rad.
We spent a while strolling the chic streets and came across a delightful little delicacy shop that specialized in foie gras and wine matches. Gee…guess what happened next?
Yup. The sweet shop-keepers recommended a perfect match for us, and even gave us little wine glasses for our picnic – so sweet! So…we were set for our “last toast”.
Aware of the fact that our taxi driver was on a meter, we decided to take our picnic back to Marseille and find a little park to enjoy it in and toast to the last day of our trip. Along the way our driver says to us, “You know, if you liked Aix, you would love Cassis. I know you would – it’s very romantic.” So….guess what happened next?
Yup. Next thing we knew, we were on our way to enjoy our picnic lunch in a little town called “Cassis”, and believe us, fate gave us a gift that day we will never forget. We couldn’t believe our eyes – this beautiful little town turned out to be such a blessing it will forever be in our hearts. Perfect little cobblestone streets, perfect little cafes, and a perfect little beach. Perfect way to end our perfect journey.
Those of you who know us well, know that we completely and faithfully believe that “everything happens for a reason”, and on this day that was proven to us. This was where we were supposed to toast to the last day of our wonderful trip. We toasted to my Mum and Dad, to each beautiful day we spent, to each other, and to the blessings that the future holds. Thank you, Universe…words can not express the gratitude we feel. Thank you, thank you, thank you…..
…and that’s today’s TLC.